Having a pet is like having another child. A fur child.
You have grown to love them and they’re part of the family, right? And now you're leaving on your holiday and you would like to take them with you!! You can't possibly leave your best friend at home.
It would be heartbreaking, right?
So, what are the best options when travelling with your fur baby to the Margaret River Wine Region?
It must be noted that pets are banned from many national parks across Western Australia. This includes those in and around the South West. With many of Australia’s top sights located inside our country’s national parks it means your pet may not be able to enter, regardless of being on a lead or in a car. Pets are strictly forbidden inside most Australian National Parks.
Dog Friendly Beaches and Walks
We all know dogs love beaches, and these are often our favorite places to take them for exercise.
The Margaret River Region has some great beaches where you can take your dog not only just to walk, but to have fun chasing balls and paddling in the surf. These include;
- Beachlands in Busselton
- Yallingup Beach
- Smiths Beach
- Bunker Bay
- Eagle Bay
- Gnarabup Beach
- Prevelly Beach
Often beaches have designated areas for on-lead walking and off-lead fun, so don’t forget to check before letting your dog roam free off their leash.
Your best resources are local government websites which have information regarding where your can and can’t go. You can download the City of Busselton PDF brochure or link through to the Shire of Augusta Margaret River information site HERE .
There are also many dog-friendly walks and trails in the Margaret River Region.
Trek the Geographe Path
The Geographe Path is a paved walking trail along the foreshore. It stretches 23 kilometres from Busselton to Dunsborough; that's a hefty hike or bike. But the good news is that it can be broken up into shorter, family-friendly sections.
Dog-friendly? Yes, on a lead.
Hike the Bush Loop
The Bush Loop in West Busselton is a 4.5 kilometre hiking and biking trail. Enter the trail from Frederick Street in the Light Industrial Area and follow the path along bushland. The path will begin to loop at Queen Elizabeth Avenue, then you'll follow the Vasse Diversion Drain along College Ave, cutting in through suburban streets to arrive back where you started.
Dog-friendly? Yes, on a lead.
Walk the Beach
Busselton is blessed with beautiful beaches, so it only makes sense to take advantage of these natural walking paths. An early morning beach hike is a great way to get everyone out of bed and into nature. Western Australia puts on glorious sunsets so be sure to head to the beach to capture the glow during the evening too.
Dog-friendly? The stretch of beach off Earnslaw Road welcomes dogs to run and play off-lead. Another popular dog beach in Busselton is from King Street to the first set of timber access stairs you'll come across as you make your way towards the jetty. This section of the beach is sign posted.
Wandandi walk/cycle path (formally named the Rail Trail)
This track extends between Cowaramup, Margaret River and Witchcliffe. The surface is unpaved but excellent and generally flat for walking or cycling.
Other great places include the coastline of Augusta or the sculpture park at Hamelin Bay
Of course, you can always walk your dog on-lead throughout the townships, where you can appreciate the history and culture of the region. Just remember when you’re out and about to observe the signs and rules in the area.
Pubs, Grub, Wine and Brews
We all know that the Margaret River Region is famous for some of the best wines in Australia, but did you know both you and your fur baby can book a tour?
Escape South West Tours offers a great Pawsome tour where you will both get transport around to local wineries where you can taste wine and sample food. Ensuring both you and your dog have a great day out without having to drive.
Alternatively, just visit our famous wineries at your own pace. Some of our wonderful dog friendly wineries include:
- Cape Naturaliste Vineyard
- Lenton Brae Estate
- House of Cards
- Howling Woods Wines
- Hay Shed Hill
- Flametree winery
Another good resource is the MRBTA website
If beer or cider is more your speed, then checkout these great places:
If it’s food you’re after, then you can’t go past these great restaurants and cafes where your dog will be welcome:
- La Casina
- Clancy’s Fish Pub
- Bunkers Beach House
- The Sea Garden
- The White Elephant Café
- The Goose
- The Studio Bistro
It’s always a good idea to call ahead to make sure you can bring your dog for a visit.
Dog Friendly Accommodation
Visiting and holidaying with your pooch in the region couldn’t be easier. With accommodation properties in the region being plentiful, and catering to all budgets and styles.
Check out our list of properties offering you a place to rest your head and paws:
- Halcyon Bay
- Jarrah Grove Forrest Retreat
- Caves Road Chalets
- Stay Margaret River
- Sandy Bay Holiday Park
- Redgate Forest Retreat
- Caves Caravan Park
- Private Properties
- Dunsborough Holiday Homes
- Beachside Prevelly Villas
Things to remember when holidaying with your dog;
- National Parks: Be aware there are several National Parks in the region where dogs are not allowed, however dogs are allowed on-lead in two National Parks: Keenan NP and Bramley NP. Please remember to respect the environment and keep pathways clean of waste and always be on the lookout for signs indicating that baits may have been laid in the Parks.
- Creature comforts: Remember to pack a food bowl, food and treats, plus your dog’s bed and any blankets or toys to keep him comfortable and secure. Always remember to carry water. Ensure your dog remains happy and hydrated as they explore our region.
- Is everything up to date? Are your dog’s vaccinations up to date? And just in case the unthinkable happens and they get lost, making sure their microchip is up to date with your correct contact details.
- Take breaks: When travelling don’t forget to make frequent stops so your dog can stretch their legs, drink and relieve themselves.
- Clean up: Always clean up after your dog, to maintain a pristine space for locals and other travelers.
- Have fun: Remember have fun, explore new places and have a great holiday.
- Be respectful: Also, be aware that your dog may find their new surroundings unfamiliar and unsettling, especially when the rest of the family go out and leave them home alone. This is important especially if you are renting a holiday house/chalet or property with neighbors, as a dog left home alone in an unfamiliar home will often bark (all day and night).
Be courteous, remember while you are on holidays your neighbors may not be. So, a barking dog will be disturbing to them. Do the right thing if you plan on going out and leaving your fur baby in unfamiliar surroundings. Do a quick check with your neighbors to see if there were any issues, or if your pet caused any disturbance, because the last thing you want is a cranky neighbor.
Other useful links;
- The Dog’s Guide to Margaret River – Dog Friendly Campsites and Wineries
- Dog Friendly Camping from Perth to Exmouth